Thursday, 12SEP19, saw the official grand opening of one of the largest warehouse complexes in Slovenia and the largest within the cargo-partner group. Completed in just eleven months, the €28 million iLogistics Center near Ljubljana Airport is one of a series of new cargo-partner iLogistics Centers in Eastern Europe (Sofia, Vienna and Prague being the other locations, and the one in Dunajska Strada, Slovakia, still undergoing expansion.)
Stefan Krauter, cargo-partner’s CEO summed up the reason for investing in Slovenia at the opening ceremony: “With its favourable geostrategic position, Slovenia is a natural connection between Central and Southeast Europe. In addition, the seaports of Koper and Trieste provide an important connecting point to Asia and the Mediterranean. This major investment will further solidify our strong network and long-standing expertise in Central and Eastern Europe and provide the ideal basis for our continuing growth.”
Almost all Slovenian cargo-partner offices and warehouses under one roof
The iLogistics Center comprises an office building and a warehouse – all equipped with modern, state-of-the-art facilities.
Designed in cooperation with the Slovenian-based architects of Protim Ržišnik Perc, the office building boasts 4,000m² of office space over four floors, which now houses the company’s Slovenian head office, along with all other Slovenian cargo-partner offices except the Koper office which remains located in Sermin. The big move from the other offices to the central location took place during the month of August, when operations began at the center. cargo-partner employees and visitors can now enjoy modern working spaces with large glass surfaces overlooking both the beautiful Kamnik-Svinja Alps and the airport complex. Staff also now have access to relaxation, fitness, and social areas, a huge modern kitchen and dining area which seats 50 people, and a number of mod-cons including electric car-charging stations at the front of the building.
Staff resonance has been very positive, according to Viktor Kastelic, cargo-partner’s MD in Slovenia: “With its open and modern design, our office environment offers various informal break-out areas where colleagues can get together for spontaneous collaboration. In addition, a cafeteria, terrace and balconies provide further spaces for relaxation and creative communication. Our staff has greeted the new working environment with great enthusiasm, which I am especially pleased with.”
State-of-the-art space, space and more space!
For cargo-partner, what denotes an “iLogistics Center” is having the right information at the right time, in the right quality at the right place. The new center in Ljubljana is indeed absolute state-of-the-art. It has a total area of 25,000m², 44 truck loading docks and over 20,000 pallet slots. There is also a 6,000m² small parts store and handling area, plus 5,000m² of cross-deck and block storage space. If needed, provisions have been made to construct an additional 8,000m² storage building next to the warehouse at a later stage.
Designed to also handle temperature-sensitive freight, the center includes temperature-sensitive storage facilities, and meets the requirements for handling highly demanding cargo such as pharmaceuticals, medical devices, automotive and high-tech equipment. The high-rack aisles comprise a combination of induction-guided, narrow-aisle racking and standard wide-aisle racking systems. Complying with TAPA standards, the warehouse is also strictly access controlled.
A variety of services are on offer from short and long-term storage, picking and packing, labelling, cross-docking, consolidation, multi-channel distribution and comprehensive eFulfillment for online stores.
An extravagant start to operations
Over 300 guests attended the official inauguration ceremony at the iLogistics Center on 12 SEP 19. Amongst them were cargo-partner’s CEO Stefan Krauter, the company’s MD in Slovenia, Viktor Kastelic, the Austrian Ambassador to Slovenia, Sigrid Berka and the Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of Infrastructure of Slovenia, Alenka Bratušek. After initial opening speeches from the four VIPs, underlining Slovenia’s geostrategic position and the importance of investment in developing the region into a thriving European logistics hub, bringing jobs and ensuring economic growth, Viktor Kastelic invited the iLogistics Center project team on stage to thank them for the successful completion of the project. A gala dinner followed, accompanied by an extravagant light show, live music from “Perpetuum Jazzile” – an a cappella jazz band – and a unique dance performance using parcels and choreographed by the well-known Slovenian, Miha Krušič.
Fraport Slovenia welcomes the developments
In response to CFG’s questions as to how the new iLogistics Center would complement and interact with Fraport services, Fraport Slovenia responded:
“cargo-partner and Fraport Slovenia have had a long business history and have always been cooperating well. Fraport Slovenia is trying hard to assure as highest level of services as possible and being very flexible to meet the requirements of all business partners – big and small. cargo-partner is a very valuable partner of ours and we are happy that successful cooperation is reflected by the two-digit growth of export traffic over the last year. We are sure that new modern logistics terminal of cargo-partner and developing cargo infrastructure at LJU in the future will offer many new inspiring opportunities for cooperation. State-of-the-art new facilities increase the competitiveness of the airport and the whole region and they stimulate new business.”
cargo-partner started operating out of Slovenia in 1996 and now employs over 100 staff there. A further 30 jobs are being created through the start of the iLogistics Center, thus contributing positively to the region’s economic development.